PartyPoker Premier League, Day 3: Tony G Leads; Black, Duke Surge
Day 3 of the PartyPoker Premier League tournament twin heats saw one sprint and one marathon, as Tony G clung to a slim points lead while Andy Black surged into second place overall after winning his second straight heat.
Heat #5 kicked off with Phil Hellmuth, Roland de Wolfe, Andy Black, Eddy Scharf, Ian Frazer and Juha Helppi as the lineup, with 2007 champion Helppi starting the day at the very bottom of the points standings. His day offered little improvement, as he busted in sixth place for no points on the day. Helppi exited after limping in from the small blind with , and Andy Black raised from the big blind with . Helppi went into the tank for a moment before moving all in over the top of Black, who thought for a long while before making the call. The flop came down , and Helppi picked up a gutshot draw to go with his big cards. The turn gave him a flush draw as well, but the river missed everything, busting Helppi and doubling up Black early in the heat.
Following the loss of a big pot, Phil Hellmuth moved his last few chips into the middle a few hand later with , and was called by Roland de Wolfe, Eddy Scharf and Black. The players checked around on the flop, and Scharf fired when the hit the turn, having hit his start. The on the river sent Hellmuth to the rail. de Wolfe was next to fall when he moved all in with from the button and Andy Black found in the big blind. Black flopped a set on the board, but still left de Wolfe a gutshot draw. The on the turn was no help, and the on the river sent de Wolfe to the rail.
Black continued his rout by bouncing Ian Frazer in third. Frazer raised preflop, and Black moved all in instantly. Frazer quickly called with , only to see Black table . The flop moved Frazer ahead, but gave Black the nut flush draw. The on the turn killed some of Black's outs, but the on the river made his flush and finished Frazer's day. It then took just seven hands of heads-up play for Black to eliminate Scharf, who moved all in over the top of Black with . Black called with , and when the board ran out , Black picked up his second consecutive heat victory and temporarily joined Tony G atop the points standings.
Heat #6 featured David 'The Devilfish' Ulliott, Tony G, Annie Duke, Marcel Luske, Vicky Koren and Alex Kravchenko, and was as different from Heat 5 as possible. It took 55 hands for Heat #5 to reach heads-up play between Andy Black and Eddy Scharf, and it took 56 hands for Heat #6 to see the first elimination!
Marcel Luske was the unfortunate first victim when he ran into Tony G's . All the money went in preflop, and the board ran out to send the Flying Dutchman to the rail. Tony G lasted only four hands longer himself, when he got all his money in preflop with to Annie Duke's . The board brought no help for Tony, and he picked up only one point in Heat #6, just enough to give him the end-of-day overall lead.
Another 50 hands passed four-handed as the remaining players picked their spots carefully. Finally, Annie Duke moved all in preflop with , and Vicky Coren called with . Despite Duke's protestations that she would likely lose as a 3:1 favorite, the board came down , and Coren was eliminated in fourth. Duke claimed another victim immediately afterwards when Ulliott moved all in preflop with ; Duke found in the big blind and made the easy call. No ace appeared on the board for Ulliott, who departed in third.
Duke took almost a 5:1 chip lead into heads-up play, but Alex Kravchenko made a 30-hand match of it before Duke finally put him away. Kravchenko made his stand with , and Duke called with . The flop came , keeping Duke in front. The turn was no help to Kravchenko, and the on the river gave Duke her straight and the Heat #6 win.
The overall 2008 PartyPoker Premier League standings after Day 3 are as follows:
Tony G – 19 pts.
Andy Black - 18 pts.
Annie Duke – 15 pts.
Eddy Scharf – 13 pts.
Alex Kravchenko – 13 pts.
Roland de Wolfe – 11 pts.
Vicky Coren – 8 pts.
Marcel Luske – 6 pts.
Ian Frazer - 6 pts.
Phil Hellmuth – 5 pts.
Dave Ulliott – 4 pts.
Juha Helppi – 2 pts.